By Vipasai Niyamabha
Is that too long to spend in the town and do I need a tour company for day trips? Thanks a lot for your reply. Jennifer
A week is certainly not too long in this renowned Unesco World Heritage site. There are many things to do and it’s also also a good place to practise the art of doing nothing, just relaxing and watching the world go by. Luang Prabang is home to many beautiful and interesting temples and its night market is heaven for anyone who likes handicrafts. In addition to visiting the temples and talking to the monks, you should check out the National Museum and Mount Phu Si, a hill in the main part of the city. Hire a car, tuk tuk or bicycle to head out of town and visit waterfalls. You should also hire a boat to Pak Ou cave, a Buddhist pilgrimage site for hundreds of years.
Take time to wander around the town and linger over meals at a riverside restaurant.
On October 5, the town is hosting the inaugural Luang Prabang Half Marathon (LPHM) or “La Procession” charity event, which is divided into three race distances – 7km, 14km and 21km. Amateur runners can opt for the 7km circuit, which starts at the National Museum and passes many of Luang Prabang’s most famous attractions.
I will be staying in Bangkok for two weeks in August, and would like to know if buying a Rabbit Card is really a cheaper way to get around the city on public transport? KM
The Rabbit Card has replaced the BTS SKY SmartPass but it still works like a smart card, allowing you to store money to it when you travel on the Skytrain – just like Hong Kong’s Octopus Card or the Oyster Card in London. It’s aimed at frequent commuters especially those who use BTS and BRT (Bus Rapid Transport) and will soon also cover the MRT. It can also be used in partner shops like McDonalds and Starbucks.
You have to buy it at a BTS station and there’s an issuing fee of Bt50 (promotional price until December 2013; normal fee is Bt150), and a Bt50 card deposit, then you choose the amount you want to store on the card. You can add a minimum value of Bt100, up to a maximum value of Bt4,000.
You can also choose 30-day trips with unlimited travel distance with the number of trips specified going from 15 trips up to 50 trips. It's convenient if you have to travel during rush hours, as you don't have to queue to buy a ticket. You just swipe the card and go through.
It can’t be used on the Airport Rail Link or on ordinary buses but for two weeks, I’m not sure that it would save all that much other than time.
That said, if you are going to use the BTS to get around every day, then it definitely works out cheaper than a one-day pass for which to pay Bt130 a day.